As you step boldly into 2020, its empowering to think that you’re entering not only a brand new year, but a brand new decade! For many of you, you may already be furiously writing out your resolutions list. But how many of the things on it are things that you actually want to do, versus feel like you should do?
See, it’s this major gap between the resolutions that come from a place of negative critical introspection, versus a place of loving desire for your entire self that makes a difference in whether you keep the resolutions or not. In short, when you vow to, let’s say follow a new year’s diet, or create a new year’s diet and exercise plan for yourself, are you taking into account your entire being (mind, body and spirit)? Or are you simply looking around at what others are doing and saying, “I should do that as well”?
Ask yourself this honest question, and if you’re doing the latter (which the majority of us do), it’s time to start looking at your new year’s goals much differently. Read on for some refreshing insight on how to make truly healthy resolutions that aren’t just temporary, and how to keep your new year’s resolutions year after year, without a hitch.
7 Ways To Make Healthy Resolutions You’ll Honor…
1) Examine your values
Step one begins with doing some positive introspective work, and coming up with a list of your current values, that you want to hold high above all in the new year. This will be the baseboard from which your healthy resolutions will spring, and the secret for how to keep new year’s resolutions that matter to you.
As an idea of where to start, what are some things that make you excited to get up in the morning? If you love dogs, maybe spending some time volunteering at an animal shelter on the weekends might give you great joy; Or, if you desire to write a book, carving out some time to simply write one paragraph a day might be a worthwhile goal.
When it comes to your health, also think about your values. Just saying, “I need to be healthier” isn’t enough… You have to define it further. Wanting to be mobile enough to run around with your children, or life a long life so you can watch them grow are just two great examples of your “why” when it comes to making healthy lifestyle changes.
2) Create realistic goals
The next step in how to keep new year’s resolutions is to create manageable road maps to success that work best for you, (not someone else). For instance, if exercise is important to you, but you currently have a busy work schedule and long commute, trying to fit in 30-60 minutes of exercise daily may be out of the question.
However, research shows that shorter workouts, along with moving more throughout your day can also be very effective. So, vow to start with daily 5-15 minute workouts, walks on your lunch break, and fun physical activities on the weekend.
The same rules can apply to every area of your life. You have to take a long, hard look at your current lifestyle and ask yourself how you can realistically alter things to better suit your values. Then, make small changes that may eventually lead to bigger ones.
A great set of criteria to use when you devise your goals is called SMART. What’s a SMART goal? By definition, it means that you give your goal substance by making sure that it meets five specific benchmarks: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely.
By making sure your goal includes all of these aspects, you greatly increase your chances of actually completing it! An example of a SMART goal is trying to lose 10-20 pounds in 3 months by drinking meal replacement shakes in place of two meals per day, along with following a clean eating plan.
3) Write those goals down!
After you know your goals or healthy resolutions, make sure you write them down! Studies show that those who do this have a much greater chance of seeing follow-through on them. In fact, in one study of 270 participants, the results showed that you’re 42% more likely to achieve your goals if you jot them down!
Why is this? First off, taking your goals from your head to a pen and paper forces you to turn them into SMART goals, and clarify their purpose. In short, it can help you strategize your goals better, so you actually have a picture of how to make them possible – and by doing this, can also motivate you to see them out to completion.
4) Make clean eating fun
Next, when it comes to focusing on a healthier new year’s diet, first start at your values and your “why”. Then, don’t look at eating better as something you have to do, versus something you get to do. In essence, clean eating can help you live a happier, more vibrant life. You get to feel more energetic, more motivated, and less fatigued when you eat healthy foods, and that’s something to celebrate.
Then, make clean eating fun! There are so many delicious recipes that feature fresh, whole foods to tantalize your taste buds, while still supporting your optimal health. In addition, there are so many supporting clean eating supplements, such as meal replacement shake smoothies and green juices, that can make it possible to keep up with a healthy diet on a busy schedule –while also tasting great.
5) Detox your kitchen
Next, many people think about detoxing their bodies, but rarely anyone ever thinks about giving their kitchen a detox! And by this we mean ridding it of all the things that are spoiling your health and weight loss goals.
We aren’t saying not to have any fun! It’s absolutely okay to treat yourself. But remember that good, healthy food can still taste amazing! If you rid your kitchen of the chocolate, candies, ice cream, potato chips and other items you typically binge on when you’re stressed, emotional or bored, that only leaves healthier things for you to reach for instead.
And once you see how amazing things like this Salted Caramel Mocha Shake can taste, or this Protein Powder Mug Cake or Decadent Protein Balls, it makes detoxing your kitchen seem like the smartest thing you’ll do all year.
6) Accept support
Research shows that one of the best ways to keep goals like healthy resolutions is to sign people up to your journey, to do it alongside you. Some of the best places to find support are in groups dedicated to the exact same thing you’re trying to accomplish.
For instance, if living a healthier lifestyle and reaching a healthy weight are important to you, the 310 Community is a place where others are also striving to reach their best selves, daily. The encouragement and motivation you’ll find there is unique, and many people report that it’s a major factor in their short and long-term success.
No matter what your goals are, one of the secrets on how to keep new year’s resolutions is to invest others in them with you. This way, they can help hold you accountable and encourage you along, and you can hopefully do the same for them.
7) Rethink your stress
Finally, last but not least is a concept probably very foreign to you… actually being grateful for your stress in the new year! Though we’re all taught to avoid stress as much as possible, let’s be honest, is stress really avoidable for anyone?! What you really need to do is reexamine your stress, and how you can potentially use it in your favor, to reach your healthy resolutions.
In her Ted Talk, Psychologist Kelly McGonigal shares her research on stress, pointing out that it may only be bad for you if you believe it is. Instead, she suggests that you view stress as your body’s natural ability to rise to the occasion and help you overcome life challenges – in essence, it can help you get done what you need to do.
If too much stress in your life is preventing you from being healthy and reaching your goals, McGonigal also suggests that reaching out to others can help reduce stress levels. That, coupled with viewing your stress differently, can help you take better charge over your life, and possibly even lengthen it.
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